Photographer: Chris J. Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

BOE Says Presidents Club Prize Was Unauthorized Re-Auction

Updated on

The Bank of England said a prize at the controversial Presidents Club Charity Dinner in London last week was re-auctioned from another event without the central bank’s authorization.

The BOE became embroiled in the furor surrounding the event -- at which the Financial Times reported that multiple hostesses were harassed, groped and insulted -- as one of the gifts on auction was a tour of the bank and tea with Governor Mark Carney. The central bank said in a statement Wednesday that it was not aware of the dinner and did not approve any prize.

“The Governor is deeply dismayed that such an event could take place.”

The central bank said he had agreed to donate a tour of its Threadneedle Street headquarters to a separate charity, the Lord Mayor’s Appeal, for a previous auction. It now understands that the successful bidder subsequently re-auctioned it without consulting or contacting the BOE before doing so, and would have been refused permission if he had, the statement said.

“The bank has a clear policy on the charities with which it is associated and this does not include the Presidents Club. The unauthorized re-auctioning of the prize at the Presidents Club dinner was clearly against the spirit of the original donation. The bank has therefore made clear that it has been withdrawn.”

Caroline Wright, appeal director at the Lord Mayor’s Appeal, confirmed in an emailed response to questions that the original prize should not have been resold without agreement and had now been rescinded. The winning bidder from that auction has been informed and offered a refund, she said.

— With assistance by David Goodman

(Updates with comment from Lord Mayor’s Appeal in final paragraph.)
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